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12 The End of Bismarck’s “Pretended Disinterestedness” and a New Era for German-Ottoman Relations: The Ottoman Special Mission to Berlin and Reşid Bey’s Report in 1881

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Chapter Summary

On 5 December 1876 German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck (1815-1898) delivered a speech on the Eastern Question. In the years following Bismarck's speech, several fundamental changes occurred in political preferences, priorities, and attitudes of some European Powers. One of the most critical developments occurred in European political scene was William E. Gladstone's accession to office in Great Britain as the Prime Minister in the spring of 1880. Although it was widely believed that Bismarck did not favour the sending of advisers to the Ottoman Empire at first and postponed it as a result, he actually supported the assignment of the German civil and military advisers to the Ottoman Empire from the very beginning. Reşid Bey had an audience with Bismarck of nearly two hours' duration. Interestingly, the Ottoman delegation presented to Berlin to convince Bismarck and insist on the dispatch of the advisers to Istanbul.

Keywords: Berlin; Eastern Question; European power; Otto von Bismarck; Ottoman Empire; Reşid Bey



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